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Rebuild for historic Christchurch building

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 12/07/2016

A 152-year-old Christchurch building damaged by an earthquake and then an arson attack is to be restored to its former glory.

The historic Risingholme Community Centre at Opawa had been boarded up

since the 2011 quake and work was set to begin repairing it when it was set

ablaze to in June.

The fire spread through the roof and top storey of the heritage-listed

building, causing such extensive damage that part of the upper level had to

be deconstructed.

Christchurch City Council's heritage programme manager Richie Moyle

announced on Wednesday that it would be rebuilt and is expected to reopen

in early 2017.

"We're keen to restore Risingholme to its pre-quake glory, and taking the

time to get everything in place will mean the job is thorough as well as

fast," he said.

The building was insured for $5 million. The claim for the fire damage has

been accepted but is yet to be settled.

Risingholme, a category two historic place, was built in 1864 by William

and Mary Reeves, the parents of politician, poet and historian William

Pember Reeves.

It was gifted to the city and became a community centre in 1944.

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